The Retirement Corporation of America

Summary

FACE IT, YOU must pay taxes. Otherwise, you'll go to jail. But you don't have to pay any more in taxes than you absolutely must. And there are ways—legal ways—of keeping your tax bill at a minimum. The more you practice them, the less you will pay in taxes and the faster your wealth will grow. To sum up, here are some points to keep in mind:

•  The tax code is filled with deductions, exemptions and credits. Make sure you're taking all you are entitled to.

•  Assume that a tax professional will save you more than enough in lower taxes to justify his or her fee.

•  The one thing you don't want to do is cause the IRS to take a special interest in your case. Knowing which mistakes to avoid and which papers to keep can help keep the IRS at bay.

•  Smart tax planning includes making the most of all of your tax-sheltered retirement plans.

•  Your home may be your castle but it also is one of the very best tax shelters going for most people.

•  Don't invest a penny until you have the investment tax rules down cold.

•  Smart investors know what and when to buy. Tax-smart investors know what and when to sell.

•  Having to worry about estate taxes is an indication that you have become a financial success.

•  Giving away wealth is not only good for the soul, it can be extremely good for keeping your tax bill to a minimum.